She had a long day at work, she left the office obviously exhausted. The time was around 6:30pm. The traffic she battled with on her way home only made matters worse. As she drove into the car park around 8:45pm, she wondered what she was going to eat. ‘I’ll microwave the jollof rice in the freezer’ she thought to herself. She couldn’t wait to get to her room, have a warm shower and hit the bed.
She dragged herself up the stairs to the second floor which she shared with Gbenga. She headed straight to her room, changed her dress and entered the kitchen to fix herself dinner but was repelled by an awful smell.
‘Oh no, I thought I threw away the dustbin last night’ she said aloud as she covered her nose with one hand and placed the rice in the microwave to start warming. She then picked the trash and passed the kitchen door downstairs. As she walked towards the main dustbin downstairs, a car drove into the car park. She recognized it as Gbenga’s car.
He parked his car and in no time was out. He saw an opportunity to say hi to her and quickly seized it.
‘What a great day today is. I get to see you twice in one day’ he smiled
Gbemi couldn’t really see him clearly because it was dark but with the help of the street lights, she could make out the expressions on his face. ‘Good evening Mr Gbenga’ she said with a weak smile.
‘Oh please, it just Gbenga. How was your day?
‘Tiring, I got back about 5 minutes ago’.
‘Eeya sorry dear’
Gbemi wasn’t really okay with male strangers referring to her as ‘dear’. It made her uncomfortable as she saw it as them crossing the line. But she kept it to herself and hoped it won’t repeat itself. ‘Thank you’ she said and made attempt to leave.
‘Do you have dinner? I was just about to prepare something. Will you like to join me? I could bring some to your place’ he seemed like the perfect gentleman but somehow Gbemi wasn’t impressed plus she felt he was too forward.
‘No thanks, I have dinner. I appreciate it though’ she added
‘Alright dear, have a good night rest’
‘You too’ she still didn’t appreciate the ‘D’ word
Back upstairs, the rice was hot enough. She took it with a cold glass of juice and retired for the night. She had a warm shower as she had fantasized and in another 20 minutes, she was on her bed… As she was about to sleep, she remembered the trip to SA scheduled for the coming week and she became sad all over. Favour had called her earlier that day to tell her she arrived safely but she didn’t mention the trip to her. She cast her mind back to the day’s activity and remembered Gbenga. She couldn’t really say if he was her type or not because she really didn’t have a type.
She wasn’t into men, she had a few male friends but that was it. She had never been in a relationship; not because guys never showed interest but she never gave them a chance. She knew the origin of all this but didn’t want to remember it, she pushed the thought behind her She said her night prayers and just as she was rounding off, she slept off.
She woke up the next morning feeling a lot better both physically and emotionally. She was ready for the day’s work but had not come to terms with the fact that she was meant to travel alone with her boss to South Africa the next week. She tried not to be troubled by it and decided not to get herself worked up about but instead committed it into God’s hand and put it behind her.
She had corn flakes for breakfast, she didn’t really have an appetite, she knew she was going to get hungry later in the day but told herself she’ll go to the fast food joint near her office to get lunch. She wasn’t so much of an outside eater but she wasn’t in the mood to pack lunch to work that day.
She took the bowl to the kitchen, dropped it in the clean sink and left. She went into her room, put finishing touches to her dressing and makeup, picked her bags and in no time was out of the house.
She got to the office in good time but unlike every other day, her boss hadn’t come. She had made the flight arrangement as he instructed but still somehow hoped plans were going to change. Some fifteen minutes after she had settled down, Mr Kalejaye came in and walked towards his office. She stood up to greet him.
‘Good morning sir’
‘Good morning Miss Johnson, I’ll be expecting a client by 9am. Her name is Mrs Williams, when she comes, allow her right in and cancel every appointment till she leaves’
‘Okay sir’. There was no female client with any previous appointment for that day. Instead, he was meant to have a meeting with the Sales representative from Afrigo PLC at 10am.
What happened in his office and what the details of the discussions were not really her business. Hers was to ensure his appointments never overlapped.
By 8:55am, a young lady walked into her office. She wasn’t officially dressed. Gbemi was certain that wasn’t Mr Kalejaye’s 9am appointment. The lady wore a tightly fitted halter neck with blue crazy jeans and a pair of red 6” shoes.
‘Good morning ma’am, how can I help you?’ Gbemi said quite confused and sure the lady was in the wrong place.
She removed her shades, ’Is Kolade in?’ she asked confidently
That was the first time Gbemi would hear someone in that office refer to her boss by his first name. ‘And you are?’
Without saying a word, her phone was in her ear, ‘Hello Kolade, it appears your secretary doesn’t know her job description’ she eyed Gbemi and walked towards Mr Kalejaye’s door.
Immediately, Mr Kalejaye opened his door, came out and scolded Gbemi, ‘didn’t I instruct you to allow her in and cancel my other appointments?’
‘But sir, I only wanted to confirm she was the person you were expecting’ Gbemi tried explaining.
‘Let this be the last time this happens’
Gbemi was pissed. She didn’t know why Mr Kalejaye was suddenly behaving bossy in front of a woman who was dressed as one going to the club. She didn’t say a word but watched both of them enter his office.
30 minutes had passed and it was time for his coffee. She called his intercom to find out if he was ready for it but he didn’t pick. She knew that the last time she delayed in bringing his coffee, he was upset with her so she went ahead to prepare it. She set the tray and gently carried it. She held it with one hand and knocked with the second hand but got no response and so proceeded to open the door.
She was shocked to her bones. She saw her boss and the “Mrs” on the floor, naked! As soon as they saw her, with so much shame and embarrassment, they reached for their clothes.
‘Don’t you knock again?’ he snapped and he wore his trouser
‘I’m so sorry sir, I knocked but didn’t get a response’ she said backing him with her voice trembling and hands shaking. ‘I’m sorry sir’ she said as she left without looking back.
She got into her office still trembling, she couldn’t believe her eyes. Why didn’t she think of that, she knew there was something fishy about the woman but her innocent mind didn’t conceive such a thing would happen.
‘God this is so embarrassing, how am I going to face this man after what just happened?’ she bit her little finger. She heard the door open and quickly pretended to be working on her laptop.
Mr Kalejaye and his visitor came out.
Gbemi was too ashamed to look up.
They passed the front of her desk without even acknowledging her presence. After about minute, Mr Kalejaye was back. Behaving as if nothing had happened, he looked at Gbemi and said ‘who am I meeting by 12?’
‘Let…let me check sir?’ she stammered, her hands still trembling as she pressed the buttons of her keyboard. She was obviously still in shock. ‘You have an 11:30am appointment with Mr Amos, the accountant’
‘Fine, let him in once he is around’ he said still behaving as if nothing had happened. Just as he opened the door to his office, he turned at Gbemi and said ‘let what happened here never repeat itself’
By 2pm, Gbemi could hear her tummy rumbling, it was the official break time. She had an hour. She called Mr Kalejaye’s intercom to inform him she was stepping out for lunch. She went to the fast food joint adjacent to her office. As she sat down to eat, flashes of what happened earlier still kept coming so she picked her phone in order to get it off her mind..
She had gone half way with her food when she saw someone she thought she recognized buying food. ‘His back view looks so much like… could it be him? Does he also work around here?’ Before she knew it, he turned around with his tray of food in his hand.
It was Gbenga!
He spotted her immediately, smiled and walked towards her table ‘Hi, is this seat taken?’ he asked still carrying his tray.
‘No, its not’ Gbemi smiled, happy to see a familiar face after the horrible incident earlier that day.
‘How are you? So good to see you. Do you work around here? Gbenga asked as he held his spoon about to dig into the heap of rice in front of him.
‘I’m fine thank you. I work with Fando Oli, it’s a stone throw away. I didn’t know you worked around here too’ Gbemi said eager to know more about this her neighbor whose path seemed to always cross hers.
‘What a big coincidence, you work with Fando Oil. I have an appointment with the MD by 3:30pm’.
‘You don’t say’ Gbemi was surprised. ‘You are Mr Folorunsho?’ she said as she checked her little notepad.
‘Yes ma’am, that me’ he smiled. ‘Let me guess, you are Mr Kalejaye’s secretary?’
‘His PA actually’ she nodded and smiled. ‘What a small world indeed, I could almost bet you were stalking me’
They both laughed
‘But you know, we should hang out one of these days and get to know ourselves more’ Gbenga suggested.
‘It doesn’t sound like such a bad idea’ Gbemi was beginning to feel more comfortable around Gbenga, her new found friend.
They finished their meal and walked to the office together. Gbenga signed in at the reception and they both went upstairs together.
‘You can have your sit here’ Gbemi pointed at one of the chairs positioned opposite her desk where clients waiting to see the MD sat. ‘I’ll call him once it’s time’.
‘Thank you so much’ he was indeed grateful for her hospitality.
In another 10 minutes, Gbemi placed a call to Mr Kalejaye informing him that his next client was around.
‘Let him in’
‘Okay sir’ she hung up. Facing Gbenga, ‘you may go in’
The meeting lasted about 45 minutes and Gbenga came out smiling. ‘I got the contract’
‘Congratulations, I’m so happy for you’.
‘Thank you. We should celebrate you know?’
‘Hmmmm well I guess we could’ she smiled.
‘Dinner? My place?’
Gbemi was a bit reluctant but then thought to herself, ‘there really is no harm in visiting my neighbor is there?’
‘Don’t worry, it won’t be late and trust me, I’m a good cook’
‘Yeah right, let me be the judge of that’ she smiled
‘We have a deal then. Is 7pm ok?’
‘it’s fine, I’ll work towards it’
‘Alright dear, see you soon’
‘Bye’. The ‘dear’ didn’t sound out of place anymore.
Thanks for reading
To be continued…
Drop a comment on your thoughts on this part. What happens next?
Watch Out For Gbemi Part 3 next week Sunday. Don’t miss it.